Physical Science

posted by Tawanza

I'm working on the "Introduction to radioactivity and half-life experiment". It's harder than I thought. Any references that you know of that might make this easier to understand?

  1. drwls

    This reference may be useful.

    (Broken Link Removed)

    You may have some difficulty finding a radioactive source with a half-life short enough to measure. Most are used in nuclear medicine, with carefully limited distributiuon.

    My son once did a science fair experient like yours, using wadded-up Coleman lantern mantles as a source. They contain radioactive thorium. The half life was too long to measure, so he tried to verify the inverse square law. He used a Heathkit Geiger counter that I once made and still have. Background radiation complicated the experiment.

    He did not get an A, was not happy about that, and I have avoided giving Science Fair advice ever since. If you have some specific questions, we have several teachers here who will be glad to help.

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